Thompsons, the UK’s leading tipper bodybuilder, is in the process of delivering its first big fleet order for type-approved off-road tippers to the Dudman Group of Southwick, West Sussex. Specified with Thompsons all-steel Loadmaster Lite bodywork, the first nine of 20 8×4 Volvo FMXs are already on the road, with the remaining 11 nearing completion.
Built to meet the DVSA’s N3G specification for off-road trucks, the Dudman Group’s new tippers include a number of new features which will now become standard specification items with all relevant Thompsons’ bodies.
First is a heavy duty, all-steel rear under-run bumper, connected to the vehicle chassis rails by extra-strong drop-down brackets. Second are wings that extend over the full width of the vehicle’s wheels and tyres.
Third are aluminium sideguards to both sides of the chassis – a specific benefit of the Thompsons design, being that they are bottom hinged so as to allow easy swing-out access to components, such as fuel and air tanks. Fourth, the rear light clusters are now of an extra bright, long life LED design.
Supplied by MC Truck & Bus at Maidstone, Volvo’s FMX chassis is purpose-designed for off-road operation. In turn, the ultra-durable Loadmaster Lite was the Dudman Group’s obvious choice for bodywork. The UK’s top selling steel tipper body, Loadmaster Lite is of single-skinned construction that also delivers an attractive payload capacity – some 19 tonnes for each of Dudman’s new tippers.
Dudman Group’s owner Steve Dudman comments “These are the first new tippers the Group has bought for some years, and in that time both legislation and vehicle specifications have moved on considerably. So we made the fairly easy decision that we just wanted the best possible tippers for our varied uses that we could buy.
“This way, we ensure both maximum, legal compliance today, along with the highest possible future-proofing for tomorrow. We work our trucks hard over a whole range of tasks – so again, choosing the toughest and most reliable trucks and bodies possible makes obvious common sense. The fact is we’ve had Thompsons bodies on our tippers for over 25 years. For strength, durability and outright operational value they are still our first choice!”